CRQ CD296-297 – Albert Coates – the rare Columbia recordings (1919-1921), Beethoven’s Ninth (1923) and other treasures

Albert Coates  – The Columbia recordings (1919-1921) and Beethoven’s 9th (1923)

CD1 – The Columbia recordings, and operatic choruses on HMV

  1. Scriabin – La Poème de l’Extase (Symphony No.4) (1st recording)
    (abridged – cut between sides 4 and 5, from Fig 30 to 32, 19 bars omitted)
    (Columbia L 1380-1382, 74060-2, 74061-2, 74081-1, 74082-2, 74062-1)
    25th April 1920 (sides 1, 2, 5) and 5th May 1920 (sides 3, 4)
  2. Wagner – Siegfried Idyll (1st recording)
    Columbia L 1425-1426, 74268-2, 74269-2, 74270-2, 74271-2)
    11th March 1921
  3. Rimsky-Korsakov – Scheherezade – II. The Story of the Kalandar Prince
    (abridged – cut from 16 after C to fig G, 80 bars omitted)
    (Columbia L 1429, 74186-3, 74187-2)
    15th November 1920 (1st side may be retake from 29th April 1921)
  4. Rimsky-Korsakov – Scheherezade – IV. Festival at Baghdad – The Sea (1st complete recording)
    (Columbia L 1355-1356, 76742-1, 76743-1, 76744-2, 76745-2)
    11th December 1919

All with London Symphony Orchestra at Columbia Studios, Petty France, London
In track 4 movement, two notes have been extracted and digitally repitched from elsewhere in the movement to complete a side join.

  1. Boito – Nerone – Act IV – Gloria, gloria vittoria a te (1st recording)
    (HMV D 938, Cc 4831-I (4-0574))
    2nd July 1924
    Symphony Orchestra with Browning Mummery (tenor), Edward Halland (bass), Leonard Hubbard (baritone), William Michael (baritone), Harold Wilde (tenor) and J.H. Bullock (baritone) and 5 trumpets.
    Recorded in Room 1, Hayes, 2 months after the work was premiered.
  2. Boito – Mefistofele – Prologue – Salve Regina (1st recording)
    (HMV D 938, Cc 5177-IV (4-0614))
    24th October 1924
    Symphony Orchestra with May Busby (soprano), Miss Rusel Myer, Nellie Walker (contralto), Glady Peel (contralto), Sophie Rowlands (soprano), Louise Trenton (soprano), Edward Halland (bass), Harold Wilde (tenor), Edward Leer (tenor)
    Recorded in Room 1, Hayes
  3. Bizet – Carmen – Act IV – Here they come
    (HMV D 1047, Cc 7063-II (4-0749))
    26th October 1925
  4. Gounod – Faust – Act I – Red or white wine (La Kermesse)
    (HMV D 1047, Cc 7065-II (4-0750))
    26th October 1925
    Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, recorded in Studio B, Hayes
    (Faust includes solo line, possibly sung by Edward Halland)


CD 2: Excerpts from Elijah and Beethoven’s Choral Symphony

Mendelssohn – Elijah – Part 1

  1. Yet doth the Lord see it not (HMV D1144, CR 798-IA (04891))
  2. For he shall give his angels (HMV D1144, CR 792-I (04889))
    Royal Albert Hall Orchestra and Royal Choral Society. Live performance in the Royal Albert Hall, 23rd October 1926
    Soloists in “For he shall give his angels”: Florence Austral (soprano), Edna Thornton (contralto), T Walters (soprano?), Gladys Ripley (contralto), Frank Webster (tenor), John Hargreaves (baritone), Edward Halland (bass) and Howard Fry (bass)
  3. Baal we cry to thee (HMV D1061, CR 37-II (4-0781))
  4. Thanks be to God (HMV D1061, CR 38-II (4-0782))
    With Symphony Orchestra, Chorus and Organ, recorded in Queen’s Hall, London, 1st December 1925

    Beethoven – Symphony No.9 in D minor Op.125 “Choral” (2nd complete recording)

  5. Allegro ma non troppo, un poco maestoso
    (HMV D842-843, Cc 3655-III, 3696-IV, 3704-I (4-0511/3))
    24th October 1923 (sides 1, 3), 8th November 1923 (side 2)
  6. Scherzo: Molto Vivace – Presto
    (HMV D843-845, Cc 3705-II, 3706-III, 3707-III, 3708-III (4-0514/7))
    24th October 1923 (sides 1, 3, 4), 8th November 1923 (side 2)
  7. Adagio molto e cantabile – Andante moderato
    (HMV D845-846, Cc 3735-II, 3736-I, 3737-I (4-0518/20))
    29th October 1923
  8. Finale: Presto – Allegro molto assai (sung in English)
    (HMV D847-849, Cc 3738-III, 3813-II, 3814-II, 3815-III, 3816-II, 3817-IV (4-0521/6))
    29th October (side 1), 7th (sides 2, 3, 5)  and 8th (sides 4, 6) November 1923
    All with unnamed Symphony Orchestra, recorded in Hayes Room 1.
    Chorus in Finale: Gaby Valli (soprano), Louise Trenton (soprano), Nellie Walker (contralto), Gladys Peel (contralto), Harold Wilde (tenor), Sydney Coltham (tenor), Edward Halland (bass), Leonard Hubbard (bass)
    Soloists in Finale: Medora Salteni-Mochi (soprano), Edna Thornton (contralto – sides 2, 3, 5), Nellie Walker (contralto – sides 4, 6), Frank Webster (tenor), George Baker (baritone)
    Edna Thornton can be heard as contralto soloist from start to 13:00, Nellie Walker from 13:00 to 17:27, Thornton from 17:27 to 21:08, and Walker from 21:08 to the end.

In the slow movement of the Beethoven, Coates slowed down considerably at the end of each side. These rallentandi have been digitally reduced to improve the musical flow at the side joins. Between the first and second sides of the finale, three quavers are omitted in the original recording. The identical notes have been extracted from earlier in the side to fill in the join between these two sides. Curiously there are points in the first two movements where there is an overlap of several bars between two sides, making it all the more strange to omit notes at this side join. At the start of the penultimate side, the trombones enter a beat early to give the choir their note. This has also been amended so the music follows the score (as in Coates’s electrical recording where the side join is a little earlier).